With the rise of internet work-from-home jobs and freelancing, our concept of a workplace is steadily changing. Now, our notion of a conventional workplace can be different from the rooms full of individual cubicles that we were used to. HubStaff, a software from a company of the same name based in the United States, offers its services for traditional, distant, or even completely online workplaces.
An employee monitoring software is used to track whether or not employees are keeping on with their responsibilities, in addition to screen and look out for unwanted or illegal activity. Apart from monitoring behaviour, it may also be used to manage any type of workplace and make it more productive.
Monitor Productivity and Improve Coordination with HubStaff How Invasive is Hubstaff
HubStaff includes the features that you would expect from an employee tracking software such as:
Online Activity Monitoring:
We all know full well that social media kills productivity. All too often, a few swipes on any social media app is going to end up consuming hours of our time, even in the workplace. Checking up on important notifications from time to time is acceptable, but it is helpful if managers know when it is becoming a problem. HubStaff can help track if employees use too much social media and other programs that hamper productivity.
HubStaff can pay attention to the sites (and even the url of the exact page) that workers visit during work hours, as well as the time they spend on it. Traffic from applications may also be monitored and the time spent on these is also listed.
The data is displayed neatly, and supervisors can see the page title of the visited pages, the url, and the time spent, all in one glance. They can also go to the links displayed to verify if employees really are allowing time slide on sites unrelated to work.
Monitoring individual screens is too much of a hassle and can be quite awkward if done personally. But then, it’s necessary for when a remote workplace setup is in order where it is impossible to handle employees in person.
HubStaff has a feature that can enable managers to take screenshots of the employees’ screens at a customizable time period, with 10 minutes as the default. If it sounds too much of an invasion of privacy, then it could be set to have the screenshots be partly blurred. In this way, managers can determine if workers are working in their desks instead of playing games or watching movies, without exposing possible sensitive information.
It must be noted that employees would understand that this feature is activated on their screens. Employees would also be able to view the screenshots taken from their displays just so that they’ll be ensured that this feature is implemented just for reasons related to work.
With that said, this still has an effect on the behavior of employees as knowing that their displays are tracked is enough of a reason for them to perform their tasks.
Monitor Activity on Computer Peripheral Devices
In standard office setups, the sound of keyboard strokes and mouse clicks can be enough of a measure of worker activity. HubStaff can detect keyboard strokes and mouse interaction and detect times of inactivity where none of those instances are found.
HubStaff can then compare the overall time in which the mouse or keyboard is active to the overall time spent working. HubStaff considers a productivity rate of at least 60% as a great sign. Productivity rates of less than 60% can indicate that a worker is taking too much time on the desk doing nothing, or if a worker is doing too slowly.
The dashboard for this tool shows the productivity rate of each member of the group. In this way, the tool may also be used to see how many members of this team are working on a project at a specified time.
Work Limit Monitoring How Invasive is Hubstaff
Working overtime is also becoming more of a standard, even so in countries such as Japan where it’s an unofficial standard. Reasons can vary from employees wanting to finish their tasks early, catch up on projects, and some are only workaholics who want to be working as much as you can.
However, it has been demonstrated that too much work can be harmful as creativity and productivity declines without enough rest. There’s a good reason why there is a standard 8 hours of work each day.
HubStaff can help managers track if employees are working a lot of hours each week. They could set the maximum time each week that employees can remain logged on for work. Following the maximum time has been reached, then the time tracking tool stops. In this manner, workaholic tendencies are curbed, and that workers will not be given the incentive to put in too much time to work and sacrifice personal and rest time.
Monitor the Location of Employees
Managers working with remote teams might find it hard to communicate and organize the team. Some employees might be leaping from place to place for work, and even be working from cafes or other workstations.
Setting up unplanned meetings can be hard if workers are commuting from 1 place to another, or if they’re doing field work.
Members of the team can install HubStaff on their smartphones so that the employee place monitoring feature can be used. With this, managers and team leaders can track the location of the members during work hours.
HubStaff can display how much time employees spend on commuting between places and how long is spent on each location. From these data, managers can determine the best time to do rapid meetings.
As this requires employees to install HubStaff in their phones, this can be seen as overly intrusive of a tool. But same as the rules on iOS and Android applications, employees will know precisely when their places are being tracked.
Project Progress Monitoring
HubStaff lets the whole group report on the progress of their tasks. HubStaff can then use this to offer a report on the status of every job on a weekly basis. On the team dashboard, managers can see each individual employee’s working hours and a summary of the completed and uncompleted tasks. The dashboard also displays whether employees are online.
Payroll, Timesheets, and other Miscellaneous Features How Invasive is Hubstaff
Aside from tracking employee productivity, HubStaff can also make it easier for managers and admins to manage payrolls and manage accounts.
Timesheet and Payroll Management
HubStaff can be a digital check-in and check-out mechanism for companies. And, better than traditional systems where timesheets can be cheated, the HubStaff timesheet tool can capture the very first keyboard stroke or mouse activity of the day for each worker.
Managers can also pause the machine manually for breaks.
With HubStaff, keeping a record of working hours and wages is also made easier. HubStaff’s citizenship handling tool can determine each employee’s payout depending on the hours logged for them. By linking their paypal accounts with HubStaff, then payment transfers are made easy. Cash transfers for payroll can even be automatically set to weekly, monthly, or on a set period.
Project Tracking for Customers How Invasive is Hubstaff
Being transparent to clients is key for establishing trust for your company. HubStaff makes it easy to communicate with clients, as well as assure them that things are going as agreed upon.
HubStaff makes it easy for clients to take a peek into the progress of jobs. This can be simply accomplished by including clients into the members tab. From there, they can see the stages of the project, in addition to the pending and completed tasks.
Third party Applications Integration
HubStaff can integrate well with other project tracking tools such as but not limited to Asana and Trello. This is good news for business owners that are already using other project management software.
You might be wondering if using HubStaff to handle employees can be counterproductive since it might make an atmosphere of distrust between managers and team members. To ease your mind, you can be sure that HubStaff lets the whole team know of the entire monitoring system. Employees can be sure that their actions are monitored only during work hours, and exactly how they are being tracked.
However, as a business owner or manager, it’s your duty to let your workers know beforehand that your workplace will be implementing HubStaff. Also, HubStaff should only be installed on the devices necessary for work where it would make sense to have implement a tracking system.
To put it simply, HubStaff is a tracking system and not a surveillance system. Employees can be certain that only the instances of the keystrokes and mouse actions are listed, and not the actual keystroke that they register. HubStaff will not let managers and admins know what exactly their employees are typing.
HubStaff has three paid plans that charge a fixed price per user per month. The Basic plan costs $10, while the Premium and Enterprise plans cost $10 and $20 respectively.
Just the Premium and Enterprise plans unlock features related to payroll management. The enterprise feature comprises fleet tracking and even a concierge account.
For those who are ready to pay on an annual basis, then the cost per person per month of the paid plans will be slashed down to $5, 8$, and $16, respectively.
Verdict How Invasive is Hubstaff
You can be sure that HubStaff can flawlessly do the job that it promises to do. The user interface is intuitive and clean, and isn’t at all confusing, requiring only minimal orientation for workers not familiar with the software.
However, it has to be stated that not all businesses might benefit fully from using HubStaff. HubStaff is specially suited to modern desk tasks, and for projects where team members use computers for the majority of their time. Take jobs that require a lot of reading for example, where employees might seem to be inactive based on computer interaction. The software might say that they are inactive, but they just might be on top of a reading assignment in reality
Business owners should also not completely rely on the data that HubStaff collects to ascertain whether their employees are being productive or not. HubStaff is merely a project management software using tools and features that will allow you to gauge the performance of workers and other members of the team. This is certainly not a virtual or artificial intelligence office manager.
All the same, HubStaff collects data seamlessly, and we all know that data helps you run your business effectively.
FAQ How Invasive is Hubstaff
Q: Where do the screenshots go?
A: HubStaff stores the screenshots and other information using Amazon AWS.
Q: Is there a maximum number of group members who may use HubStaff?
A: The paid plans have a minimum of 2 users and cap of 350 users.
Q: Why is implementing HubStaff in businesses completely legal?
A: HubStaff has complete legal permissions for use, and resources regarding them are available on their website. But these are only based on United States laws. It is best to consult with a lawyer for international users.
Q: Can employees choose when they’re being tracked?
A: Yes, employees can manually start and end HubStaff tracking and have it run in the background. HubStaff doesn’t collect any data once monitoring ends.